Fall TV Preview
Lethal Weapon Pilot Preview

Fall TV First Impression: Lethal Weapon

The broadcast networks have nearly 20 shows debuting this fall, including Michael Weatherly’s NCIS follow-up, Kiefer Sutherland’s term as POTUS and the story of MLB’s first female player. To help you prep for it all, TVLine is offering First Impressions of the not-for-review pilots.

Next up on our list….

RELATED Get First Impressions of NBC’s This Is Us, ABC’s Designated Survivor, NBC’s Timeless, CBS’ Bull and ABC’s Notorious

THE SHOW | Fox’s Lethal Weapon (Wednesdays at 8/7c, premiere date TBA)

THE COMPETITION | CBS’ Survivor, NBC’s Blindspot, The CW’s Arrow and ABC’s The Goldbergs/Speechless (new)

THE CAST | Damon Wayans, Sr. (My Wife and Kids), Clayne Crawford (Rectify), Keesha Sharp (The People v. O.J. Simpson), Kevin Rahm (Mad Men), Jordana Brewster (Dallas) and Johnathan Fernandez (Good Medicine)

THE SET-UP | Grim Reaper-taunting Martin Riggs (Crawford) transfers to the LAPD, where he is partnered with Roger Murtaugh (Wayans), a family man who in the wake of a recent heart attack just might be getting too old for this… situation. Kinda like the movie, you know?

RELATED Fall TV Schedule 2016: What’s on When? And Versus What?

THE FIRST IMPRESSION | As a child of the ’80s, I had reservations about cuing this pilot up. Believe me. But damn… this small-screen reboot is fun.

Lethal Weapon is not inexpensive — directed by McG (Charlie’s Angels), its thrilling centerpiece chase scene alone likely cost more than most other pilots as a whole — so there may be a bit of “Wow!” factor inflating this early take. But beyond that, the casting really clicks, in large part because Crawford is, not surprisingly, twice as good as he probably needs to be, bringing as much pathos to Riggs’ tragic backstory as he does liveliness to the buddy cop banter or action scenes. Wayans meanwhile avoids TV’s “uptight do-right” stereotype, instead portraying a Murtaugh who isn’t totally averse to some derring-do, as long as he gets home to his defense attorney wife and three kids in one piece. A late scene between Murtaugh, his newborn daughter and Riggs hints at the variety of notes the series will get to play.

As Roger’s Mrs., Sharp lights up the screen but hopefully will be rounded out by the occasional courtroom (versus bedroom/dining room) scene. Coming off of Mad Men, Rahm fills the thankless role of the stuffed-shirt LAPD boss managing the Riggs/Murtaugh partnership, while Brewster (who by the way also has Secrets and Lies Season 2 also airing this fall) plays the cop shop’s in-house shrink and Fernandez is your quirky-ish M.E.

THE TVLINE BOTTOM LINE | Lethal Weapon will need its name recognition to pack some serious firepower, going up as it is against no less than two other action-dramas as well as the resilient Survivor. Will the same “Empire halo effect” that helped keep Rosewood‘s heart beating give it the competitive nudge it needs?

RELATED Fall TV Poll: Which New Shows Are You Most Looking Forward To?

Watch the trailer for Lethal Weapon, then vote in our poll below.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Kevin K says:

    I’ll give it a try. Rosewood may have been a surprise hit for Fox last year and the same could be said with the TV version of Lethal Weapon even though I enjoy the big screen blockbuster that starred Mel Gibson and Danny Glover.

  2. sarah t says:

    I didn’t really want to watch this one either until I saw the promo and now I’m a little intrigued. Can’t wait to check it out. Looks like the cast has good chemistry. Interested to see how it does. It’s one of just a couple that have really interested me.

    • Jim says:

      I couldn’t agree more. I love the LW movies & was initially against this show, but the promo completely changed my mind. I just hope it can continue this type past the pilot episode.

      • Sil says:

        That’s me too. At first meh, why try to copy a great series of movies. But, this looks good. I’ll try it when it airs.

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      I totally put off watching it, as I said, but was overdue for a Fox pilot First Impression. Was happy to be pleasantly surprised.

      • MMD says:

        Considering I couldn’t find a single network show that I was looking forward to this fall plus it is on Fox which I never watch, I am completely surprised and now really looking forward to this. I really enjoyed the movies and this looks like fun.

    • Iris says:

      Same here, I love the movies and I was very wary of an umpteenth reboot but the trailer and this review convinced me to at least give it a try.

  3. Jenny Rarden says:

    I LOVED the pilot when I watched it. They have great chemistry. Can’t wait for it to start airing!

  4. Luis says:

    An interesting franchise to reboot, but it is kind of made for TV, if done right. I’d check it out for an episode, just for Damon Wayans

  5. Theresa says:

    I am so surprised it hits each beat of the movie exactly! It has the same charm and action plus humor of the original. I love it!

  6. Bwhit says:

    I hadn’t even watched the trailer simply because I had no interest but now that I’ve read this and watched it, I think I’m going to try it. They seem to have great chemistry as partners…. It’s added to the list.

  7. rinaex says:

    I’ll give it a try for Damon Wayans.

  8. Bella says:

    I’m not a fan of reboots, as they’re generally terrible. But if the chemistry between the leads is good, I’ll watch.

  9. Imzadi says:

    I can’t believe I am saying this, but that trailer looks actually good. And I really, really love every single Lethal Weapon movie. It’s difficult anyone coming close to the perfect combination of Mel Gibson / Danny Glover / Richard Donner / Shane Black. Even if Black didn’t write ever LW movie.

    But this looks like fun and despite my earlier my earlier, rather not very favorable reservations, I will watch the pilot and the first episodes.

  10. Max says:

    Tough time slot. However, if Arrow continues with the nonsensical flashbacks, I may have to switch to this.

  11. Ally Oop says:

    No thanks. Just doesn’t interest me.

  12. Carol C says:

    This looks like fun ~ so much better than I expected. The competition looks awfully strong, though.

  13. Ram510 says:

    Happy Damon is back on tv, but I’m a little buddy cop’d out right now so I’ll probably skip this one. Wednesday is already busy for me anyhow

  14. Phyllis Mason says:

    Wow! Great character nuances with good humor bits. The extra effects are perfect add ins. We ve needed a new show after BONES that has it ALL!

  15. Vin says:

    Could be a good one. Depends if they come up with a good storyline or not. The comedy factor is definitely there but I hope the serious part of the show is good and the action scenes are realistic. The storyline is going to mean everything. If it’s got a good story then people will want to see episode after episode. If it’s just kind of funny with a bad storyline nobody will tune in for multiple episodes.

  16. PA Wholock says:

    I usually really hate remakes, and I REALLY love the original Lethal Weapon movies so I was hesitant to say the least… But after watching all the promos and trailers…? This looks promising actually! I was planning on watching the first episode, MAYBE two, but now I’m excited to *try* to ignore my hatred of remakes and embrace this show! Who knows, maybe this will be a turning point for me and I’ll actually start enjoying some remakes!

  17. Teresa PITARRA says:

    I am watching the pilot now and love it.

  18. laurie carlos says:

    Im sorry but this guys no mel gibson!! You need a MUCH HOTTER RIGGS..GOOD LUCK!

    • Anne says:

      i don’t know what you’re talking about, new Riggs is smoking hot. Everything about his look is delicious. Way better than Gibson.

  19. Jasper Casbeer says:

    Just watched the first episode and it rocked! Looks like they are trying to keep the dynamic with new people and as this can be difficult it seems like they found the right guys for the job. Enough hint of the old with some flare of their own!

  20. Joyce White says:

    This is the best TV show I have seen in years! With the Good Actors & all the Action it could have really been a good movie!

  21. John Pollastro says:

    Best TV show this fall unbelievable cast action-packed funny, laughing the whole time looking forward to the show being on for years to come!

  22. DW says:

    Love Lethal Weapon! Chemistry between two main characters is awesome. Show is full of action and funny.